California Citrus Mutual (CCM) applauds the Obama administration for its timely release of text specific to the proposed Trans-Pacific Trade Agreement. “While we have been briefed extensively on the content, reviewing the language is the last step before providing our unqualified endorsement,” states CCM President Joel Nelsen.
“We believe the administration has negotiated an excellent agreement for California citrus and most other California commodities,” said Nelson. Tariffs are plunging as a result of negotiations, creating a more competitive and fair international marketplace.
With tariff reductions in Japan, Vietnam and Malaysia, California fruit can enter the marketplace at a more competitive price. Following the Uruguay Round agreement, citrus imports into the United States have exploded, whereas citrus exports from California have only minimally increased.
“California is by far the nation’s largest fresh citrus producer, and while we are confident we can overcome off-shore competition without subsidies, our opportunities in the world market have been nil,” Nelson said.
“We’re eager to look at the language and then offer our unqualified support to members of Congress,” concludes Nelsen.
Nelsen also serves as chair for the Fruit and Vegetable Trade Advisory Committee which is comprised of 22 commodity leaders from across the country and offers counsel to USDA and United States Trade Representative on all proposed trade agreements.